Biennial Conference Committee, Spring 2012

I. Dwaine Eubanks (

Sesquicentennial is one of those wonderful words in the English language that is fun to roll around the tip of your tongue while trying to remember what it means. Yep, you got it—150 years! So, this summer, when the Penn State BCCE kicks off, we will all join to celebrate the sesquicentennial of the 1862 Land Grant College Act (under their banner of Education for Everyone!). Every state has one or more colleges or universities that owe their existence to that piece of legislation, which is commonly referred to as the Morrill Act (named after Representative Justin Smith Morrill of Vermont).

“…without excluding other scientific and classical studies and including military tactic, to teach such branches of learning as are related to agriculture and the mechanic arts, in such manner as the legislatures of the States may respectively prescribe, in order to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes in the several pursuits and professions in life.”

Dan Sykes ( and Sheryl Rummel ( (the General Co-Chairs), along with Mary Kay Orgill ( and Kent Crippen ( (the Program Co-Chairs), have put together what promises to be an extraordinary conference in the pantheon of BCCEs. The technical program will support the sesquicentennial celebration theme with a rich mix of content of interest to chemistry educators. At the time of this writing (January, 2012), 84 symposia and 76 workshops have been scheduled. This BCCE is not to be missed! Block out the dates from July 29 through August 2 on your calendar, book tickets to State College, Pennsylvania, and point your web browser to for everything you need to know.

And, while you have your calendar out, why not go ahead and mark the dates for the next BCCE?  Sherril Soman (, the General Chair for the 2014 BCCE, and Julie Henderleiter (, the Program Chair, are spring-loaded and ready to launch advance publicity for the twenty-third BCCE, which will be held at Grand Valley State University in Annandale, Michigan. The dates are August 3-7, 2014. Stay tuned. They will be formally soliciting symposium and workshop proposals before you know it.

Believe it or not, advance planning for the 2016 BCCE at the University of Northern Colorado is already well under way. Richard Schwenz (, the General Chair, along with Program Chair Julie Smist ( and her co-chair Matt Miller ( welcome your input and suggestions for that conference. You will want to add the dates for the Northern Colorado conference to your calendar as well: July 31-August 4, 2016.

The Biennial Conference Committee expects to have an announcement concerning the site for the 2018 Biennial Conference within the next few months. Negotiations are well underway, and everything looks promising. Every indication is that the selection will be a popular venue. Check this column in the next DivCHED newsletter.

As always, your input to the Biennial Conference Committee is always welcome. The committee’s job is to serve the interests of DivCHED members. Contact me by phone (864) 506-0622 or email ( with your comments, suggestions, criticisms, or whatever.

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